mark: swiss nuclear clock ticks. still no agreement over iran. anchor: details for a deal. athens sends a wretch proposal to brussels as the ecb extends emergency funding. mark: the host of the ukraine talks warns of the russian threat. >> there are a lot of people in russia who think belarus is nothing other than a western
province. mark: welcome to "countdown," i am mark barton. caroline: i am caroline hyde. also, a pay raise for mcdonald's employees. it means a growing list of u.s. employers such as walmart are vowing to boost pay this year. mark: talks aimed at preventing iran from getting a nuclear bomb in exchange for sanctions relief continue. there is still no deal. elliott, good morning. what is the latest? elliott: the talks literally broke up about an hour ago. that is accruing to a tweet from a state department spokesperson.
they are getting rest. we have gone full circle from yesterday's optimism. and then some thinly veiled threats from the white house, saying all options are on the table. and also from the iranian suggesting there may not be another chance. now we are back on the optimistic track as the talks broke up over an hour ago. the iranian foreign minister saying the talks with them we are moving in the right direction. the french foreign minister saying they are tens of meters from the arrival and those are often the most difficult. we are two days beyond the initial deadline set. one would assume that even diplomats want to get back to their families for the holidays. one would hope this would be the last day of talks.
mark come a we thought we would be close to a deal a couple of days ago. there is still no agreement. we really do not know. mark: i see a swirl of claims and counterclaims. on the main point, do we seem to be inching closer? elliott: we have been inching closer for the last few days, mark. if you are just moving inch by inch, it is going to take that much longer to reach your final destination. one of the major gaps that appears to be one of the hardest is diplomatic speak, snapback. this is how sanctions would be be imposed if iran is found to have cheated. now, world powers, particularly western world powers. the americans and british and
french and germans, we understand would be more keen on some sort of mechanism being in place to reimpose sanctions on iran. the russians, we understand maybe less keen on that. what he did to come before the security council. giving the differences between western powers and russia over for example, ukraine the western powers may not be so keen to allow that opportunity. the talks resuming again today in a few hours. one can only assume they are going to get a few hours rest and then continue. hopefully we will get more news later on today when he talks resume. mark: we will speak to you later. caroline: greece has sent a 26 page of reforms to its creditors.
the clock is still ticking. some progress. hans nichols's has been following the story. hands, what is on the list? hans: about $1.1 billion in fresh spending. much of it comes from a 13th month of a pension. that would be an acceptance or all of branch to the protesters in greece. some of the stuff we have known about. there is the 800 million for offshore accounts. nothing concrete came out of the finance deputy finance ministers meeting. the greek site is claiming some
progress. they say the move has improved. nothing concrete. we get back to the clock ticking, it does not look like we will have any sort of agreement until we have the meeting. when we have all the finance ministers gathered together. it is april 24. that is a big problem. when you to give out the april 9 payment. it was reported that greece may miss the april 9 deadline. greece said there was no possibility. but they were putting the interior minister of greece. 71.8 billion of emergency liquidity assistance. they are keeping that part of it tight. caroline: former prime minister
interesting moves there. he is indicating in an interview he may come to the political rescue. would he even want the political rescue? what are the caveats he is painting in a bloomberg interview? hans: he may need the votes career he is laying out his conditions. stick with the plan, the agreement. state in the euro. -- stay in the euro. if the plan is to keep greece in the eurozone, we will provide support. exit would provide a catastrophe. his messages, keep talking to your creditors and abide by the agreement. give them specifics. we do have a 26 page document. it is pretty specific and a lot of areas.
this will give everyone to look at what the numbers are. crucially, what the growth projections are. you have seen so much money come out of the banks it is difficult to see how they can grow this year. caroline: greek costs are edging up. hans nichols in berlin. thank you. mark: europe's longest-serving leader is often called the last remaining dictator. he is in belarus. he is preparing for an election that could see him retain power for five feet year -- five yours . he sat down with ryan chilcote. ryan asked him how his fifth campaign will be different from the ones in the past given what is going on in crimea. >> everyone thinks that crimea
and ukraine is a bluff. ryan the opposition to use you says crimea is like a present to you. >> that is cynical. we could lose our country because of our policies. belarus is in a difficult situation. i am happy there are people who think this way. they have demonstrated they are not ready to take power in belarus and keep the country together. i would be delighted if the opposition does not try to come to power. if you cannot keep the country together, don't take power.
don't go after that responsibility. it is cynical to suggest the situation in crimea and the ukraine -- how could it be? the people in belarus have begun to understand the values belarusians think that our state should be stable and peace is the main priority. maybe we will be a bit poorer than the rest. we don't care. we will live in a peaceful country. where areour children and old people will not be dying from bullets and shrapnel. mark: we will bring you more from the interview throughout the morning.
caroline: let's check in with some of the other stories. the leaders of the u.k. parties weill lineup for a debate. each will make short opening statements have a minute to ask questions, and then a closing statement. it will be broadcast by itv and starts at 8:00 p.m.. mcdonald's will raise pay and offer paid holiday time. the changes take effect on july 1. they apply to 90,000 workers. by the end of 2016, average pay will be over $10 an hour. it will not affect the 90%+ of restaurants run by franchisees. pfizer has faced delays in
getting products approved in china. this is seen as the latest sign uncertain the faced by foreign drug companies in china. president obama has signed an executive order that allows the use of economic sanctions against perpetrators of cyberattacks and online corporate espionage. the u.s. government is using the threat of sanctions to help prevent data theft after breaches and u.s. companies such as target and sony. you can find more on the story and more on bloomberg.com. mark: join the conversation on twitter. let us know what you think of the show. caroline, how many easter eggs are you going to consume? caroline: hundreds mark. i cannot tell you. i only have three or four on my desk. mark: there were some consumed in my house. i did not partake. i just watched.
mark: as the ecb extends emergency funding to greek banks, let's look at how the euro is holding up. we are awaiting further news from greece. a greek officials say progress is being made. the imf deadline is the ninth. do you worry about the deadlines approaching? >> this is a continuation of the story with greece. it will stay just below the headlines. i think, for years. we know they want 7.2 billion. it is part of the agreement to extend the bailout. they have not provided the details the creditors want. but, we also know the european politicians do not want greece to exit.
there is a lot of face to save for greek politicians. also for european politicians. really, almost inevitably, this is going to go to the 11th hour. caroline: a call for the euro to weaken further. what is the key factor? there are two bangs sides to the coin, euro and dollar. >> if you look at yields, you're probably would come to the conclusion greece has not moved the market that much. we have a massive bond buying program. that is the overwhelming factor. yields pushing lower. that really has been the big
factor. the interesting part now is we have had a run of eurozone data. if you took away the bond buying program, germany would have reacted -- i think the interesting story now is the pace at which germany, how much impact that has on yields and the market lost perception of the duration of the qe program. will it be cut short? does that mean the euro is going to bounce back faster than the market is anticipating? there is a lot of uncertainty with respect to the german data. for now, it's the fed and u.s. data that will drive euro-dollar. mark: did that mean the data should be put aside? jane: given the german data, i
am pleased i have not. just as the german data has been surprising on the upside, a lot of the u.s. data has been surprising on the downside. given that story, if you were to take a weighty qe plan, -- take away the qe plan, i think the dollar would be higher. if germany does carry -- that takes parity out. caroline: dollar strength has been the story, but a little bit of weakness in the u.s. data. the fed trying to talk down talks of interest rate rises. jane: that is exactly right. we have been a little bit nervous, maybe putting on the data we might have to -- but right now, looking at inflation data in the u.s., it is benign. wage inflation is going to be
important tomorrow. looking at the average earnings data. also, if you look at core cpi. they are benign. in our view, right now, that suggests the fed does not have all those boxes ticked. for us, it is december september, not june september. mark: how do you read from all the noise from fed officials? the one that stands out is jeffrey lacher. he says the main interest rate should be raised in june when all fed presidents and governors are saying different things. how do you read through the noise? jane: it is important to look at what they are all speaking. we have had him speaking a lot. the comments about june or september, he said them again
last week. the market can say, they are saying the same thing. but really, it is just the last headlines the market has seen. if we look through all the data there is some dovish commentary as well as hawkish commentary. it is important to balance it. one of the things they are all saying is the timing of the hike will be dated to dependent. -- data dependent. the majority of data we have had through q1 is disappointing. caroline: what do you think of the nonfarm payroll, 245,000 workers is expected. a shortened day of trading in the u.s. but none in japan. jane: it could be volatile. given the volatility we have had, it is in the ut conclusion. it could be volatile. one thing that has spiced up at the data is the report.
week, coming in under the level. focusing the market's attention on the fact that we could have a disappointing release. if we look back to the q1 data, payrolls were strong. if you look at the other reports, even within the data the people participating, that is at record lows. very low levels. then if you look at retail sales. even yesterday's ifm that was week. a host of u.s. data. why is that? is that the impact of the strong dollar? caroline: is that a case of bad news is good news?
jane: we have seen that trend in the last few years. certainly in the chinese. bad news means stimulus will stay for longer. that should give risk assets a be oost. mark: let's move elsewhere. the austrian bank could cut interest rates next week. since the last meeting in march the aussie dollar has not fallen as much as the governor might have wanted. is this going to be the move, if the move does happen, that will sellnd the aussie dollar low? jane: in interest rate cap would send it lower. that is something which is dependent for the asteroid and.
for the australians. iron or, that is a worrying. there is an economic case for an interest rate cut. constraining factor here is the housing market, particularly in sydney. higher levels of household debt. on balance, we think they will cut again this year but it will be interesting to see how they tackle the high-level of household debt. mark: getting breaking news. out of kenya. heavy gunfire reported at a kenyan university. at least five gunmen are said to have attacked the university in kenya. the gunman are said to have held several hostages. that is according to news we are getting from the standard. we will bring you more details. they are said to have attacked a
kenyan college. several hostages are being held. jane, australia could be next. it is incredible what 2015 has thrown at us what it -- when it comes to the easing of policy. who wins, who loses? jane: the big winner has been the ecb. does the better german data -- it will allow the euro to weaken. the dollar is he a common denominator. if dollar strength does not carry on, that moderates the currency wars. in japan, we saw japan, back in recession last year. it managed to get out of recession in q4. the report suggests it is only
just walking away from recession. growth is dampened. that raises the risk the bank of japan will do more. they will have to do more to take away the impact of the consumption tax hike. zero inflation. i think they may have to do more which means the yen may we can. caroline: if us a call. jane: we've got 126. if that starts accelerating again, it could go higher. the dollar is the common denominator. that should slit on the pace of dollar appreciation and some of the volatility we have seen an fx. -- in fx. mark: jane, seen your -- senior fx strategist. caroline kola more of: more of our interview with the man referred
mark: you are watching "countdown to go time for your -- "countdown." time for your fx check to read the aussie dollar has fallen by 3%. trading at the lowest level against the u.s. dollar since 1999. i chose the aussie dollar you will know why if you listen to my interview with jane foley. the head of the r.b.i., rate
decision next week. they say there is a chance the reserve bank of australia will reduce the -- that will be the second reduction in the last three months. adding to the case for a cut is a currency that has barely budged since the board of bet in march. throw into this, a slump in the country's biggest export, iron or grid this should be enough for the rba to cut interest rates. -- iron or. this should be enough for the country to cut interest rates. this is something jane alluded to.
in sydney, that plan could be working a little too well. low interest rates have helped spur property prices by almost 40%. from a trough in may, 2012. the aussie dollar, your to date is down 7% against the u.s. dollar. 18% lower over the last 12 months. on a trade weighted basis, against nine of its major developed. his. i looked it up this morning. a great function on bloomberg. it is down on the day week, month, three months, six months one year, and year to date. it is still 0.6 point percent higher than its one-year low on february 12. the aussie dollar want to watch ahead of the rba meeting on the seventh of april.
caroline: more central bank stimulus. let's have a look at some of the other top stories. kraft foods is being sued. for allegedly minute you heading wheat prices. become become a, which announced a merger with heinz, is said to have illegally influenced wheat futures prices by hoarding contracts. a u.k. labor party has responded to a letter from business executives which called on voters to support conservative policies. they signed a letter embracing the labor that form. the choice for voters will be whether to choose a government that works for those of the top or for all people. a morgan stanley executive is boasting the biggest race on
wall street. the bank boosted his pay by 25% in 2014 making his compensation $22.5 million. morgan stanley shares jumped in the last three years. the fund's return on equity a short of 10% of goals. american senator robert menendez has promised to fight corruption charges after he was accused of accepting early $1 million in gifts and donations. -- nearly $1 million in gifts and donations. menendez is considered one of the most influential democratic and latino voices on foreign policy in the u.s.. you can find more on that story at bloomberg.com. mark: an update out of switzerland, the talks will
continue tomorrow at 9:00 p.m.. our mideast editor is there. we will bring you more details as they come out. caroline: he is often called the continent's last remaining dictator. he is running the republic of belarus and preparing an election that would see him retain power for five years. in a rare and exclusive interview, the president who hosted the minsk talks on ukraine set down with ryan chilcote. let's bring ryan in now. ryan: he was in the peace talks -- it was at the peace talks that we got the cease-fire that everyone is talking about. between the russians and the ukrainians. he did not really broker the deal but he was the host. he was a very close ally of the russians, perhaps the closest
ally in the former soviet space. at the same time he has come out against the annexation of crimea. he said a lot of things in support of the ukrainians. he told me be situation right now in ukraine is alarming. he warned that the two sides might be slipping towards war. have a listen. >> i hope this is thenot the calm before the storm. i would not like that. they tell us we are a long way from peace in ukraine. the most worrying thing is that the u.s. has not been openly involved in this process. i believe there can be no stability in ukraine without the americans.
having met recently with representatives of the u.s., officials, i clearly laid out this. stating i don't know what americans want here in eastern europe, particularly ukraine. but if they want peace and stability, they should immediately get involved in this process. ryan: how bad in your opinion can the situation in ukraine get? >> neither the sides trust one another. that is one issue. the second issue is a lot of armed he people thousands of them, who do not answer to the president or ukraine's military command.
you can call them whatever you like. there are a lot of armed men out o there. they are ready to fight to the victorious and. -- end. ryan: they got the cease-fire but everything that is supposed to follow, none of that has begun between the rebels and kiev. hopefully things will move along. you hear from alexander lukashenko that if the americans do not get involved, nothing is going to improve. his first he is concerned, putin got involved because he felt threatened by nato and the u.s. if they are not coming to the table, what is the point of talking? mark: how worried is he put in will shift his sites to belarus next?
ryan: he said there are a lot of politicians and rusher who have an imperialistic view and look at belarus as a province of russia. he said if there is an attempt, the belarusian military would be prepared to respond. you have to realize who we are hearing from. he will be circumspect. he gets money from the russians and cheap gas and oil. the fact that he says anything about the idea that the russians could theoretically into being, although he said it is unlikely although he spoke about the threat, is meaningful. it gives you a sense of the anxiety in the post-soviet space. that may be crimea was a dangerous president. caroline: what about the fact he has been saying this all along? ryan: he relies on russian gas.
caroline: because his economy is being dragged lower his of the russians? brian: -- ryan: he himself is sanctioned and many of the people in the government because of their policy on the opposition. he has been brutal on his crackdown of the opposition, at least as far the european union is concerned. their main export market is russia. sanctions have hit. they are hurting as a result of that. their main job, economically speaking, and perhaps this is more important than the geopolitical niceties, is to turn around and diversify their export market. he and much of belarus has been locked out of the european union. mark: you last interviewed him how many years ago? ryan: the ninth of september
2001. he had just won his get election. we used a look we -- we talked about allegations of death squads used against his opponents. i reminded him of that. caroline: how did that go down? brian: he said it is better to keep them alive because they are still weak -- so weak. mark: there is no doubt he will win. brian: there is no doubt korean won of the most -- ryan: there is no doubt. the opposition is wondering whether they should even stand against him. they are worried if they create initiatives -- any sort of instability, he would use it to crack down on them or possibly
russia would use it to intervene in belarus. for them, it is better to have him in power than potentially loose their sovereignty. caroline: as a reminder, you can catch more of the interview. mark: you can catch ryan at's twitter. -- on twitter. he has not had much's. go to bed. -- much sleep. go to bed. caroline: coming up present obama takes on the hackers. -- president obama takes on the hackers. ♪
drugmakers and china have in recent years faced delays in getting new products approved. the move is seen as the latest sign of uncertainty faced by foreign drug companies. president obama has signed an executive use i order that allows for the use of sanctions against perpetrators of cyberattacks. this comes after breaches in u.s. companies including target and sony. caroline: the leaders of the u.k.'s seven main parties go head to head tonight. the only one of its kind before the general election may 7. a big opportunity for smaller parties to make their mark. that is according to our next guest. who has the most to gain here? the smaller parties that we
get to see grandstanding a bit? >> i think that is true. the smaller parties have the most to gain. the greens definitely naturally benefit. she will have a great opportunity to put the greens out in the national consciousness. make up a couple of media appearances that have not been so great yet. that is the flip side as well. a mistake or a critical question could turn the tables a bit. make it more difficult. mark: is it a game changer or not? is it too far from the election to possibly change voting patterns?
adrian: i don't to get is a game changer and less of the unexpected happens. if you look at the debate in 2010, when nick clague burst onto the stage as an alternative to gordon brown, they had a massive bounds. but when you got to election day, they ended up with fewer mps than five years previous. i don't think they will necessarily be a game changer. cameron will hop it providese fire for the conservative argument. just this cacophony of voices that cannot agree on anything. labor will be hoping to make their mark and make the debate more about milla bundy versus cameron then all the other parties. caroline -- miliband versus
cameron then all the other parties. caroline: many worry he is not a statesman. does he have to focus on being a credible leader? adrian: i think that is absolutely right. it was not a head to head debate. the q&a station -- session. most agree cameron sort of won this. but the expectations for miliband were so low his opinions -- ratings have gone up. mark: i saw that polls after the debate in 2010, the media coverage, they stood for more than the debates themselves. the media coverage tomorrow and the polls after the coverage might prove more worthy than the
actual debates themselves? adrian: absolutely. it is all about the spin. the moment it is over, you will have representatives from each party telling the media what happened. how david actually one. -- won. it depends on the media coverage and the snap polls. mark: where do you stand? the poll say one thing the betting market say another thing. adrian: we will not know for another few weeks. i don't know that i should side with any bun. -- anyone to read i'm inclined to look more at the polls, because they are actually trying to find out who is going to find out who is going to win. caroline: what are your clients
saying? what do people want clarity on? adrian: people are worried about the whole new level of uncertainty we are seeing compared to the last election or the elections before that. they are wondering how is britain going to be governed after the election? the only certain thing is no one will win. but that also the uncertainty has a tendency to be overplayed a little bit before the election. yes, we are in intrepid waters. -- uncharted waters but politicians are in campaigning mode. they are trying to gain that little extra. once the results come in, you see the arithmetic, if there is a workable solution, they are going to find it and do it quickly. if you look at the 2010 election it took five days to create a coalition.
i think the uncertainty is overplayed a little bit, but we are in uncharted territory. mark: how has that affected the this week? the business manifesto. miliband launched the business manifesto. they are not going to have a referendum even though many want it. how has this plate out, do you think? adrian: that you referendum is another thing our clients are interested in. if cameron wins, does that mean britain is going to leave the eu? i think it is interesting. this is not necessarily what labor wants to focus on too much. we are three days into the campaign and all we are talking about is the economy and business which conservatives know is their home field, as it were. it is curious to see whether
this is something labor has tried to get out there early because they know this is an area where they can get attacked. whether that will actually be successful remains to be seen. mark: adrian, good to see you. thank you for coming in. caroline: coming up, we will be looking at our favorite stories from bloomberg's shall output and buried -- bloomberg's digital out. -- output. ♪
mark: time for a look at our top choices from bloomberg's digital output. how many test and furious -- fast and furious films have you seen? don't say none. caroline: none. i may have seen a few step it. mark: paul walker died, one of the protagonists. his role was completed with computer-generated imagery. brothers helped the role be completed. the film could collect $190 million in ticket sales. the franchise, the prophet, not the gross, has been one point 23
northwestern province. mark: welcome to "countdown to ." caroline: a pay raise for 90,000 mcdonald's employees. the fast food chain plans to boost wages and increase paid leave. a joint employers such as walmart and target. talking competition, let's talk -- the biggest clothing retailer here in the united kingdom outperforming what many had expected. another strong performance. sales up 7%. beating estimates. the standout, they have had 14 quarters of street declines.
-- straight declines. customers realizing continued improvement. this is what held them back in their holiday sales. sales of 14%. distribution not being held back. they had problems with some of their sales because they felt they were not going to bring discounts. many bought discounts to quickly. again all about margin improvements. their profitability has been thought to be improving. guidance unchanged. they are going to get to 1.5% or 2% increase. discount participation lower. strong cash participation. this is a company that is
improving. strong progress over the quarter. food delivered another excellent performance. they have been faring better than tesco and the likes in the u.k. because they are higher quality. there are not so affected by the push down in prices. they continue to deliver on general merchandise. they brought on the head of the acre to try to improve the womenswear in particular. listening to the audience customers, because everyone wanted sleeves on their dresses. that is what they managed to bring out. mark: you want sleeves? caroline not always. don't mind bearing shoulders sometimes. mark: talks aimed at preventing iran from getting a nuclear bomb in exchange for sanctions relief have continued. her editor, elliott gold, joins
us from luzon. -- switzerland. elliott: world powers and iranian negotiators must be exhausted but they feel it is worth it. they feel they are inching towards an agreement. the french foreign minister came back late last night, saying they are several tens of meters from the arrival. but the these are often the most difficult. the iranian foreign minister saying, we are moving. we will see just how fast it they are moving once the negotiations resume. this is the eighth consecutive day of talks that they have been holding. mark, i know you love your facts. i have a couple. for u.s. diplomats, these are
the longest negotiations since camp david in 1978 that led to peace between israel and egypt. a top u.s. diplomat has not spent this long negotiating since the paris conference of 1919 after world war i. interesting nuggets which i'm sure you will be pleased to consume. mark: they were amazing. it begs the question, could the talks be extended further? you have the hard deadline at the end of june. how far could they continue? elliott: in theory, they could continue -- let's not forget that the interim agreement runs until june 30. that will not be canceled until we get to that date. the negotiations have been extended he on the deadline
which is what i think was 1.5 days ago. they could be extended further. there are public holidays certainly in europe and the u.s. coming up. i think the arcane to try to resolve the differences they have. one of the big ones might be what they call in diplomatic speak snapped back. how to reimpose sanctions if iran is found to have cheated. the western powers talking about the french, the british, the u.s., and to germany would be keen to have some sort of mechanism that reimpose his sanctions. for example, if the nuclear watchdog decides iran has cheated, the sanctions would be reimposed automatically. the russians and chinese are less keen. they would like to have some kind of arbitration. to have another vote.
given that there are certain differences over global issues such as ukraine between western powers and russia western powers might be less keen to allow for that. let's hope that they will conclude a deal. mark: elliott gotkine, reporting from switzerland. caroline: greece has sent a list of reforms to its creditors. the clock is ticking and no deal is insight. hans nichols's has been following the story. what is in the new dossier? has the list improved? hans": it is 26 pages. there is going to be first ending for this year.
we will see how well that goes over with the creditors, in part because half of that, about 600 million, that goes to the 13th month of the pension. all the talk of pension reform looks like it is heading in the other direction. there is new revenue. 3.7 billion. we reported that a couple of days ago. we are learning more specifics. 875 from new tax on offshore accounts. 600 million from a new lottery scheme. 400 20 million for fighting fraud. you start having what you are talking about in the conference call. coming out of that, greek officials were perhaps a little more positive. we still don't have a date sent for when an actual meeting can come together and they can
figure out some sort of way to release part of the 7.2 billion left over. april 24, they are meeting. that is after the big payment on april 9. 450 million euros. yesterday, it was reported that there was a meeting with the interior minister. they might seek to delay the payment career later in the day, greek officials said there is no possibility they would miss the payment. the possibility is, there is an interior minister on record saying this. you mentioned emergency liquidity assistance. they bumped up the ceiling. this is the window for greek banks to get access so they can fund themselves. the increase is only 700 million paris last week, around one billion. keeping a lid on greek banks.
it seems like they are all on the same page and forcing greece to be specific. the messages, no more money on this we have specific proposals we agree on. caroline: the banks continue to hemorrhage cash. a myriad of voices. the former prime minister indicating he spoke to us saying he could come to the political rescue. what are the caveats being offered? hans: we don't know what any sort of bill will look like. what mr. summers is saying is there are caveats. the big one is state in the euro. here is what he said. if the plan is to keep greece in the euro area, we will provide support. exit would signal a catastrophe.
the message is, deal with the creditors. in some ways, he is talking about agreements made with previous governments. stick with the prime ♪lan and agreement and there is a path forward. caroline: hans nichols's, thank you very much it clear for us. mark: of xander looser shingle -- the delusion president -- the belarusian president is sometimes called europe possible longer serving dictator. he said down with ryan chilcote. ryan asked him how his it presidential campaign will be different from past ones, given what is going on in crimea. >> everybody thinks what is
happening in crimea is a plus for lukashenko. ryan: people are saying, forget about lukashenko, we are worried about having a country. president lukashenko: we would not lose our country because of crimea. we would only lose ofit because of our own brand of policy. we should think a thousand times before taking a step in order not to lose the country. i am happy. they demonstrate they are not ready to take power in belarus. and keep the country together. i would be delighted if the opposition does not try to come to power, thank god. if you can't keep the country together, don't take power. don't go after that responsibility.
it is cynical to suggest the situation in crimea and the ukraine is good for me. how could it be? it is just that people in belarus have begun to understand and value stability. the little russians have known for a while we should be stable and this is the main priority. maybe we will be a bit poorer than the rest. we don't have a lot of resources to be so rich. we will live in a peaceful country where children and old people will not be dying from shrapnel and bullets. mark: i will bring more of the interview later. don't miss it. caroline: more top stories. an unknown number of assailants
rated a college in eastern kenya. the national disaster operations center said two people have been killed and four injured. the affiliation of the masked gunmen is unknown. the leaders of the u.k.'s political parties will line up for the only debate in which all will participate. each will make a short opening and closing statement and also have a minute each to answer questions before a general discussion. the debate will be broadcast and starts at 8:00 p.m. mcdonald's will raise pay for employees and offer paid holiday time as it works to gain an edge on rivals. the changes will apply to about 90,000 workers. by the end of 2016, average pay will be over $10 an hour. the move will not affect those
in 90% of restaurants run by franchisees. pfizer will and the vaccine operations in china after failing to renew a license. drugmakers have faced delays getting new products approved. the move is seen as the latest sign of uncertainty faced by foreign drug companies in the country. u.s. president obama has signed an executive order that allows the use of economic sanctions against perpetrators of cyberattacks and online corporate espionage. the u.s. government is using the threat of sanctions to prevent data theft after breaches at u.s. comedies including target and sony. you can find more on that story and many more at bloomberg.com. mark: let us know what you think of the show as we approach the easter holiday.
we have these twitter handles. caroline: for once, after 14 quarters of decline, a positive number coming to the likeght. taking his time. one billion. they are online. finally, it seems to be reaping positive benefits. mark: you wonder if the calls will ever -- we are going to talk about the election and the only television debate in which all leaders will take part. many polls showing it is in that between labor and the conservatives. neither guaranteed and overall jordy. we will ask the next guest what that will do to the bond market here. stay tuned. ♪
you have been on h work visiting client. they are getting focused on it too. guest: there are other issues. the qe being launched to the u.k. election has been down the list. but for investors with an interest in the u.k., they are starting to focus on it. least of which because it is highly uncertain. the results have big implications for financial markets. mark: as a bond of man, john what is your biggest concern from and in certain election result? john: if we end up with some sort of mainority government or a hung parliament, which seems likely, the risk is in the medium term. the bond market needs ongoing progress proving public
finances. if you have a minority government it makes it more difficult for them to get fiscal legislation passed through parliament. if you saw a stalling of that progress that has been made on reducing the deficits, supply expectations increase. caroline: we are seeing a number of smaller parties saying, and ends to a stare. john: if you have a situation where one of the major parties is relied on the others to help prop them up and keep them in power, there will be horse trading and concessions will have to be made. the risk of fiscal slippage intensifies if you do not have a majority administration that can take whatever decisions and chooses. mark: could external factors keep markets anchored? could yield stay low? john: they could.
given how much they have underperformed, that is certainly having an impact already. clearly if the situation around greece deteriorates, guilds will be -- gilts will be a safe haven. but the election itself is a big risk factor. caroline: what is the worst-case scenario? david cameron and miliband would have you believe it is a two horse race rig likely, it will be. a labor or conservative government hobbled together. what is the worst? tories and the eu referendum? or paying down the deficit? john: the fiscal plans are not similar in terms of the intended pace of consolidation korean labor would be a little slower
which might mean more borrowing. equity markets are a bit concerned about the possibility of intervention in sectors such as banking and utilities. as you pointed out, with the conservatives, if they do better than they currently look like they might, the referendum is a key problem for investors. confidence. potentially. the uncertainty, where the relationship with the eu may be headed. a lot of overseas investors invest in the u.k. because they want access to the single market on free and unfettered terms. if that were to change, that might make investors think twice about increasing their exposure. mark: the economy is chugging along nicely. zero .6% growth, and upgrade. will that continue if the worst-case scenario plays out?
john: we think they might move rate -- that is one reason why market expectations do not crystallize until the middle of next year. almost a year after the u.s. federal reserve. it does tie you political risk in the u.k. is a factor. if we get one of the messier outcomes, it might make the bank of england more defensive and lead them to error on the side of waiting longer to see how the political situation plays out. caroline: meanwhile, you say at the top of the concern list, is the ecb. greece. europe seems to be more front and center. john: it has the ability to overwhelm the situations. we are reasonably constructive. it is clear data is starting to improve significantly.
clearly, that might be an initial response to qe. there is much to ascertain as to whether that can continue. the greek situation is far from resolved. there are serious issues to overcome. if the recovery can stay on track, some of the worries start to lessen. with economic growth comes much more ability to control public finances. mark: they and of not spending as much as they could do, john? john: it is sort of an alice in wonderland ring. one of the reasons markets are where they are is because the market has laid out -- the ecb has laid out what they are going to do. if inflation picked up, they would have a dilemma on their hands. raining back what they said they are going to do comes with big risks. the eta starts to fade again. it would take a considerable
amount of better data and a longer time of qe being injected into the market before there is any contemplation of stopping early. at this point, they will shy away from any talk of doing that because it comes with risks. caroline: later tomorrow, payroll for the u.s. a day off. plenty of malta liddy -- volatility in the market. john: a slightly week 80 p number which got markets jittery. generally, the u.s. is on a sustainable path to recovery now. we think the fed, they are free of their ability to move on rates. mark: give us a month. john: we think september. we were thinking june earlier but it has slipped. it is difficult to see the fed
with the fastest in-home wifi and millions of hotspots xfinity is perfect for people who love fast. don't miss furious 7 in theaters april 3rd. jon:mark: you're watching "countdown. let's look at the aussie-dollar. longest losing stretch since december 9, last year. trading at its lowest level since may 15, 2011. the aussie dollar is down by almost 3%. traders see an 84% chance that the rba, the reserve bank of australia will reduce interest
rates next week the 2%. note be the second reduction in three months adding to the case for a rate cut. the aussie-dollar has barely budged. it is a's due to the slump in iron ore. the rba -- to ease support for the aussie-dollar. and the resources of the non-mining interest trees -- industries. that plan could be working a little too well. low rates have helped spur property prices.
something the rba is looking at closely. the aussie dollar by the way your to date down by 12%. i have been looking at it on a trade weighted basis. something interesting jumped out at me this morning. the aussie dollar is down on the day, the week, the month. over three months, six months one year today. no other currency is down on all of those calendar days. however it is still 26% higher from its one-year low on february the 12th. the big day next week when the rba is widely expected to cut rates to 2%. caroline: let's have a look at some of our other top stories. clark food group is being sued by true the u.s. commodity
future trading commission for manipulating week prices. the company with -- which announced a merger with heinz is said to illegally influence the 2011 wheat futures. it had contracts it did not intend to fulfill. meanwhile, the u.k. labour party has responded to a letter which called on both to support conservative economic policies. they signed a letter embracing the labor platform. dignitaries argued that the choices in the upcoming election will be to choose the government that works only for those at the top or one that works for all people. morgan stanley chief executive is boasting the biggest rise on wall street. the bank boosted his pay by 25%. morgan stanley shares jumped over 20% in each of the past
three years. an american senator has to fight corruption charges after he was accused of accepting nearly $1 million in private donations. and tens of thousands of dollars in exchange. menendez is considered one of the most influential democratic latinos on foreign policy in the u.s.. you can find much more on that at bloomberg.com. mark: the long serving leader poroshenko is also called the last remaining dictator. this is his 26th year running the former soviet republic of belarus. in an rare exclusive interview
he sat down with our very own ryan chilcote. how concerned is he ryan? ryan: he is very concerned that the situation in the ukraine might move toward war. he thinks americans need to be more involved -- involved. it's really interesting when you consider this guy has a real balancing act on his hands. ukraine is a neighbor, he has been sanctioned by the european union union. russia is his closest ally. for him to say somewhat cautiously that he is concerned that belarus could be the next crimea or a crimea is saying something. so i think he is very concerned. i started by asking him if he thinks there are people in the kremlin who have their eye on
belarus. >> there are a lot of people in russia who don't see belarus as anything other than a province. we have a concrete answer to that. we will never get into conflict with russia. we are people and i include ukraine that grew from a common root. i think this conflict was also good for russia if one can say so. in a way that russia came it is difficult to take by force in the modern world. moreover, it is impossible. i drip -- say this again whoever
comes with a sword will die with the sword. we will fight against europeans americans russians. against anybody who will set a goal to conquer this lease of land. ryan: you know vladimir putin, what does the russian president want? >> i may disappoint you but it is often said that putin wants to restore some empire. but he is a different kind of person. he will not aspire to re-create an empire. if anyone gets too cheeky and begins to waggle their fingers then russia, not just putin she has such a mentality that someone should tread carefully
about russia. ryan: and tread carefully he does. this year he needs to borrow some money and who will lend it to him? he started talks with the imf it is not clear if they are prepared to lend him any money. russia is most likely a candidate. caroline: now is his main focal point the economy? ryan: he talked about that. geopolitics aside there are economic realities and the reality is most of the exports go to russia. tractors and trucks are the big ones. and the russian market because of the oil price has really tanked. they are in a bit of a bind because the eu is closed. these emerging markets picked up some of the slack like india and
china, but nonetheless he says his biggest challenge right now is to try to diversify his exports away from russia. but that will not be easy. a lot of the industry is the industry that has been there for 30 to 50 years. it is focused toward that part of the world. caroline: a rock and hard place. mark: you can catch more of that exclusive interview throughout the morning. caroline: we had some breaking news from kenya where an unknown number of heavily armed assailants rated a student accommodations. the red cross is saying 30 people have been taken to hospital. the gunmen are expected militants and they say four are seriously injured. you can see exactly where the
content. it makes for startling viewing. iron ore has fallen by 30%. a 37% slide in 2014. an 8% slide the previous year. last year it was up with 2012 which saw a 6% rise. 2011's drop was 17%. see the red circle of the top left-hand corner? that was the 2011 peak per metric ton. that was february 17. since that peak the price has fallen by 74 -- that price by the way was the record going to 2009. behind this slump is the largest
global reduced supply. according to deutsche bank global iron demand will shrink this year. the forecasted prices could fall below $14 as weaker currencies and lower energy prices ease producers. these are those who boosted low-cost output last year into a saturated market bedding higher volumes would protect market share as they cut unit costs. looking ahead to the end of 2015, analysts with a fark -- forecast of a $64 price. these are the most bearish with a $47 core and newman securities is the most bullish. a final word with philip kirch lechner. the former chief of a higher nor at rio tinto in shanghai, these
crazy prices are below fundamental. there you have it. how much lower will iron ore slump? caroline: an emotional update on iron ore. thank you mark. let's turn our focus to the bond market. bloomberg strategist 10 zig joy just not -- tanzig joins us now. u.s. versus german, special opportunities. >> the spread is trading at 170 basis points. i'm looking for this to compress for a number of reasons. weak euro, week oil and particularly a sharp rise -- the leading indicator.
it will add to the compression -- caroline: yields rising or falling? >> this will stabilize expectations. draghi's estimate of 2%. bonds stabilize and spread compression. mark: how does that play into all of this? tanvir: particularly the liquidity and the seasonality of the march payroll. it has been under expectations by an average of 30 pounds. since november, 2014 we had a run in payroll beating expectations which is the longest since 2000.
we had goods coming below expectations. in the u.s. which has been speculated. if the labor market comes in -- caroline as adp singled yesterday -- 10 veer: -- tanvir: gold is rallying and that will add to the compression rate. caroline: a shortened market window to trade these treasuries in the u.s.. tanvir: the curve has been shortening. they are flattened because of
inflation expectations. global growth has been capitulating. we have been stuck in a trough. even though we have seen 10 year yields. it is pretty volatile. we saw a 60 basis point increase. the spread is actually stuck in a trough. if we see dovish labor market reports -- mark: the treasury market has risen every april from 2000 to 2014. april is a good month for treasury. tanvir: the japanese fiscal year started two days ago and you're basically getting 40 basis points on the 10 year japanese bond. interestingly, last year we saw
japanese accounts buying french bonds -- treasury bonds and the bond yields get compressed. be interesting to see how the waiting shifts. mark: bloomberg strategist tanzer sanded -- candace tanvir sandhu. caroline: a great day it would same. after the break we will see what is driving today's trade. 10 minutes to market open.
caroline: welcome back. earlier we had a trading update from spencers. the beat that we finally got, an increase in clothing like sales brian roberts the director of retail insights, what does this mean. we had 14 courses of declines when it comes to non-food sales. a turnaround. guest: you could see it as more of a bottoming out of the long-term negative trends.
it's not a trick away, this is probably good news. there has been some sort of a warm reception. will the public be equally wrapped? -- rapt? caroline: do they want an iconic suede skirt? mark: you do. caroline: i what to check it out. they have had great press about the iconic suede skirt mark: or it mark: -- skirt. mark: have they gotten over the -- guest: there were a lot of self-inflicted problems. we had the warehouse that fell over in a key trading. .
that is the worst thing you can do. there is good news about the fashion ranges stores were continually improving. there is lots of good news around at the moment. the big test is you can do this after a long period of decline, can you do it for six or 12 quarters? mark: is he safe or are there cries for him to move on? guest: there was a lot of frustration and even others. we finally got some and they will be looking for a long-term recovery.
the stars have aligned quite favorably in terms of fixing the basics. we are becoming slightly optimistic. but for them it is all about the products. and when they have outperformed the market consistently their product is bang on. the ranges are fantastic. we have not been able to consistently handle women's where. you can do it once but can you do it for a year or two. caroline: are you impressed by the fact they have profits? they managed to sustain their margins. guest: we are heartened by the fact the markets are headed in the right direction. they are not being so promotional at the drop of a hat. lots of little encouraging news here. they're moving in the right direction. it is all about sustainability. it is great having fashion press
as the people's bank of china encourages investment, are traitors flying too close -- traders flying too close to the sun. a lot of folks will be on the u.s. so let's check in with caroline hyde. caroline: it is all about tomorrow and the payroll. the market will be closed. it will be easter holiday for many across europe and asia. there will be some notable openings. today is pretty flat ahead of the data. when a disappointing u.s. data yesterday from a manufacturing point of view and the employment point of view. the ftse 100 moving up. dax open down .1%. flat when looking at the equity market. news out of greece, the lifeline